Robbins Nest Lenn Robbins
By Lenn Robbins
After the Yankees beat the Red Sox, 17-13, on Saturday in the first MLB game played across the pond, New York manager Aaron Boone cautioned European baseball fans not to expect 30 runs on a regular basis.
It was, in fact, the second most runs scored in a Boston-New York game.
And after the Yankees rallied to beat the Sox, 12-8, on Sunday, Boone had more cautions to issue:
Do not expect to see three batters hit back-to-back-to-back home runs as Boston did in the first inning.
Do expect to see one team put up nine runs in one inning, which the Yankees did in the top of the seventh inning.
Do not expect these two teams – really any two teams – combine for 50 runs in a two-game set.
Both pitching coaches might have opted to leave any film in England. The teams combined for 50 runs, 65 hits, including 10 doubles and 10 home runs playing in London Stadium, which featured a short centerfield wall and lightning-fast turf.
“We’ve played really well,’’ said DJ LeMahieu, arguably the team’s MVP through the first half of the season. “They are a good team, I think we’re better, but they are a good team. Still have half the season left too. Just need to keep it going and we’ll be fine.”
The offense delighted the locals. In a country that cherishes tradition and history, the MLB’s grandest rivalry was well-received. Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan Markle visited both clubhouses and sat behind the plate for the first game.
Both teams presented the Royal Couple with a gift for their six-week old son, Archie. The Red Sox gifted a onesie. Yankees had a custom-made Yankee’s child’s jersey with the name ‘Archie’ across the back and the No. 19.
“You guys have beaten next door’s present, by the way,” Prince Harry reportedly stated.
The Yankees (54-28) are tied with the Dodgers for the best record in baseball. With six games remaining the winning percentage for both teams is .659. Wouldn’t FOX just love an N.Y.-L.A. World Series?
Red Sox manager Joey Cora sure sounded like a Yankees believer.
“It wasn’t a good weekend on the field,” Cora told reporters. “That’s a good offensive team, we know that. They’re a lot better than last year. The attention to detail is phenomenal.’’
The Yankees have won 13 of their last 14 games. They extended their consecutive games home run streak to 31 and increased their lead in the AL East over Tampa Bay to six games. Boston is now 11 back.
“I don’t think the mindset ever changed, it doesn’t matter where we play,’ slugger Aaron Judge told reporters. I think we’ve always had a special team from those first couple of games in Spring Training, we had something special in this room.
“We got the two wins here in London, now it’s time to regroup and we’ve got an off-day coming up and get ready for the Mets.”
Ah yes, the Mets. They went into Sunday night’s game against the Braves on a season-long seven-game losing streak. Their bullpen might qualify as a 501(c) non profit.
The Yankees play two at Citi Field and then six in Tampa against the Rays. If they Yankees sweep the Mets and take 3-of-4 from the Rays, the AL East might be decided by the All Star Break.